Try a Little Tenderness
Career coaching: Tenderness. Despite the easing of lockdown. The damage has been done. I don’t mean just to our economy, I also mean that the damage has been done regarding how we perceive our selves, our lives, and our work…
There isn’t one client who isn’t showing up believing something needs to change with their work-life balance. There isn’t one friend who, having reflected, doesn’t want to take things forward in a new way. What I think we might be seeing is that we have some patterns to break. These patterns might have been gifted to us by parents or society. These patterns no longer serve us. The one thing I am learning is that it is REALLY hard to let go of them if I am busy shaming myself for having them.
If I beat myself up for doing it wrong, then I simply intensify the hurt. If I Shame myself for the way I have done things, then I become stuck. If I punish myself for the length of time I have cried this pattern then I merely become paralysed. What I need to do instead is to have a little tenderness. Sure I could go down the analytical route regarding why I operated in this way and go on the hunt for who gave me this way of bring. I could go way back to my core wound so that I have someone else to blame …
Career Coaching: Tenderness
Or, counterintuitively, I could start from now. I could acknowledge what I was doing, and then I could choose what I want to do different instead. I could invest in my future instead of their past. I could step into my own authority, after all, this is my life, and choose how I want the next bit to look for me.
Breathe…. see what arises when you read those words. Solution-focused coaching seemed like the most irresponsible thing ever when I first encountered it – what, ignore the problems and failure? Focus on the successes and magnify them instead… But why not? Where you put your focus is what grows… So, what I’m advocating here IS perhaps a responsible choice. Why would you not want to grow the bits that work? Why would you not want to choose a positive way forward and gain sovereignty in your own life?
Perhaps extend a little tenderness to those places where you might be tempted to judge yourself harshly. In my life I have learned way more from my mistakes than my successes, so, be grateful to them, take what you have learned, and move on… loitering in self-flagellation might well be familiar. However, it is tenderness and encouragement that brings forth new growth.
Try a little tenderness – when you are familiar with self-flagellation, tenderness is radical!